Recent Posts

Fire Odors and Your Business

3/17/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO keeps your Lake Charles business smelling fresh

Any business owner who has suffered a fire in their store knows that dealing with leftover smells is one of the most challenging parts of remediation. Smoke smells can linger for a long time after the blaze is extinguished.

SERVPRO understands that fire damage smells in your Lake Charles business are not welcoming for customers or staff. That is why we take care of deodorization as part of our remediation process.

Many factors affect the intensity of odors, such as the fire's temperature, the type of material burned in it, and damaged surfaces' porosity. The steps for proper deodorization include:

  • Removing the source of the odor, such as removing charred materials from your premises.
  • Cleaning smoke-damaged surfaces by wiping and scrubbing away soot.
  • Using deodorizing equipment such as foggers, air scrubbers, spot cleaning spray, and odor removing pellets to trap bad smells.
  • Sealing surfaces if necessary.

We aim to leave your store smelling as fresh, so the fire will be "Like it never even happened."

For help with fire damage, call SERVPRO of Lake Charles at (337) 478-1133.

Flooding and How We Can Help

3/16/2021 (Permalink)

We are here for flood water removal.

Lake Charles is no stranger to floods. In 2020, hurricane Laura wreaked havoc across Southwest Louisiana, causing lasting damage to both business and residential property.

Our trained technicians know that every flood water removal project must begin with:

  • An assessment of the situation.
  • Thorough water extraction to remove as much flood water as possible.
  • Securing your home to mitigate any structural damage risks.

If necessary, we can arrange for your belongings to be stored at our facility while we clean and dry your home – this process is known as a “pack-out.” We log all items and pack them carefully to ensure they arrive back at your home safely when the time comes.

If you need flood water removal in your home, call SERVPRO of Lake Charles at (337) 478-1133.

Our Staff is the Difference

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

When it comes to disaster recovery, we may not be the only game in town, but there’s a reason why so many homeowners and businesses choose SERVPRO to recover from water, fire, mold, or flood damage. The difference is our people!

We invest in our employees

SERVPRO invests in having the best employees in the business. We have always put a high priority on educating our team. That need is more important than ever today. SERVPRO is an IICRC certified firm with certified technicians, which means customers can expect the very highest in standards and protocol to be used in their home or business when disaster strikes.

IICRC training and certification

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) certifies and sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries and those standards are high. Our SERVPRO professionals study IICRC standards and best practices in water restoration, fire restoration, mold remediation, carpet and upholstery cleaning, and other cleaning and restoration courses so they are well-prepared to handle any disaster in any situation and know how to approach the restoration process quickly and effectively.

Employee certification training

The Employee Certification Training by SERVPRO is a voluntary, self-paced program designed for SERVPRO franchise employees to further their knowledge and training. Certification is awarded after successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules for training include:

  • Crew Training
  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Advanced Structural Drying

Ongoing, comprehensive training for our crew

Our training program doesn’t stop at just IICRC and Employee Certification Training. We also offer:

  • Initial Franchise Training
  • e-Learnings
  • Continuing Education Classes

From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. If your property suffers water, flood, storm, fire, or mold damage, know that you’re in great hands with the professional SERVPRO team. Our employees make the difference! Contact us 24/7 for restoration assistance at (337) 478-1133.

Before You Attempt Mold Remediation at Your Business Consider Hiring a Professional

3/4/2021 (Permalink)

Rely on SERVPRO’s EPA Protocol for Lake Charles Mold Abatement

As a successful Lake Charles businessperson, you offer services or products to individuals and other businesses daily. The expertise you developed in your field makes your offerings valuable and a good investment for your customers. Choosing to outsource mold remediation for a microbial outbreak follows the same rationale.

Why Is SERVPRO a Leader in Mold Damage Recovery?

Handling mold remediation in Lake Charles commercial buildings might seem like a simple task, doable by your cleaning crew. On the contrary, inhibiting mold growth and harm require specialized training and equipment and a firm grasp of moisture management strategies. Our IICRC-certified Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians (AMRT) must also hold Water Restoration Technician (WRT) certification. We use the EPA-developed Mold Remediation Protocol:

  • Locate and contain the mold, using barriers and negative pressure air scrubbers to isolate the moldy area
  • Remove mold by brushing, scraping, or utilizing gentle but effective soda or dry ice blasting
  • Bagging moldy materials for lawful disposal
  • Wipe down with EPA-registered cleaners and antimicrobials
  • Vacuuming with HEPA-filtered equipment
  • Elimination of leaks and other moisture sources to prevent recurrence

Call SERVPRO of Lake Charles at (337) 478-1133 to schedule an evaluation and plan to remediate mold damage in your business.

Lake Charles Commercial Fire Damage Restoration

3/1/2021 (Permalink)

The bustling downtown Lake Charles scene represents an excellent opportunity for your business. Whether you are a tax preparer, a hairdresser, or a clothing boutique, the foot traffic potential is attractive for many entrepreneurs. As you put your business plan on paper, you need to account for unexpected events that might derail your projections. Most people are sure to include expenses associated with weather events, but many fail to consider mechanic or human missteps in their contingency plan.

Whether your business in Lake Charles faces fire damage or an emergency brought on by mother nature, a professional restoration service should always have a spot in your emergency preparedness plans. SERVPRO is ready to help whenever you face adversity, and we come to you as soon as we can. By directly calling our round-the-clock emergency line, you access a wealth of knowledge and expertise willing to work for you and reduce your loss.

Take, for example, a small electrical fire that escalates and burns a section of your office. Although the visible trace of the flames appears small, there may be a residue that is not obvious to the naked eye. Our SERVPRO crew arrives with specialized equipment designed to identify those hidden threats. Very often, the sprinklers that ultimately save your workspace wreak havoc as well, leaving your work area a mix of smoke, soot, and extinguishing chemicals that help control the fire. It is our job to understand the behavior of each of these remnants and tackle them individually.

One of the most frustrating aspects of fire damage can be the smell it leaves behind. Well, beyond the cleanup and disinfecting process, business owners are constantly reminded of the event just by breathing in its foul smell. At SERVPRO, we seek to understand the nature of the smell and make an informed decision as to its removal. In some instances, odor counteracting pellets are sufficient to mask the odors; in others, air scrubbers are to neutralize the smell, and in more extreme cases, we may have to resort to an ozone generator to eradicate the odor. Whatever your situation, our team has the resources to identify your needs and develop a plan to meet them.

SERVPRO of Lake Charles is at your side when your business needs it. Call us at (337) 478-1133 whenever you face an emergency and allow us to help you get back to work. Together, we can leave your offices “Like it never even happened.”

For more about Lake Charles click here.

Commercial Building Flood Damage?

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

Flooding can cause terrible and sometimes irreparable damage to residential homes. However, flooding can also inflict unfathomable amounts of damage to commercial buildings. What happens when your commercial building is soaked in water and you find all of the paneling peeling off due to water damage? You need a professional repair service to come out and start making things right.

What to Do When Your Commercial Building Has Flood Damage

So what exactly happens when a commercial building that you own experiences flooding? For one thing, the flooding is going to decimate your wood paneling, wallpaper, and other similar materials throughout the structure. That means that you’re going to need to call in a restoration service to remove and replace all of that material.

Any time that a commercial building that you own has flood damage, one of the first things that you’re going to have to do is close it down for repairs. The second thing that you’ll need to do is call SERVPRO of Lake Charles.

The Challenges of Restoring Commercial Property Affected by Flooding

One of the most challenging aspects of handling commercial flood damage is the paperwork. By the unfortunate virtue of being a commercial building, there will be a substantial amount of paperwork involved when trying to provide the appropriate repair and restoration efforts.

Completing the kind of paperwork that’s involved in restoring a commercial building that’s been damaged by flooding can be much more complicated than one might think.

Professional commercial cleaning and restoration services like SERVPRO of Lake Charles know how to handle the paperwork and speed things along so that you’re not stuck waiting a ridiculous amount of time before your building is restored.

The Importance of Expedience When Repairing Flood Damage

After your commercial building has been ravaged by flooding, you might find that you feel sorry for yourself and don’t want to deal with it. That would be a big mistake. As bad as things are, you still need to take care of the building and take responsibility. Although the damage caused by flooding is extensive, you’ll need to pull yourself together and put a plan into action.

Remember, the longer you wait to address it, the more expensive your problem will be. The best thing to do is to get serious and get on it fast! When you call a company like SERVPRO of Lake Charles, you’ll get expedient service at an affordable price. This means you’ll be able to open up the business in a timely manner.

Most businesses can’t afford to stay closed due to complications from flooding or anything else. The longer you stay closed for repairs the more money you’ll lose. This is why it’s so important to call a 24/7 service like SERVPRO of Lake Charles to get the job done.

Eradicate Commercial Flood Damage By Calling SERVPRO of Lake Charles

Commercial flood damage can grind your business to a screeching halt. Don’t stay down. Get back on your feet by calling the flooding restoration experts at SERVPRO of Lake Charles. We know how to deal with flooding, and our expertly trained teams have a wealth of experience in restoring commercial buildings that have been damaged by flooding.

Don’t let flood damage keep you down, get on the phone with the restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Lake Charles today!

Take These Steps if Your Commercial Building Has Mold

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

Mold is never a welcome sight. It’s also not something you should tend to on your own. This is a job for professionals. There is more to taking care of mold than just cleaning it up. You want to make sure it doesn’t come back.

Unfortunately, mold can start to grow in any number of places, and not always obvious ones. If there is excess moisture it can start growing on carpets, behind appliances, in the ceiling, insulation, paper, wood, and even in your ventilation system.

If you discover mold or even suspect you may have it, you should take steps right away to get rid of it. It will spread very quickly and not only pose health effects but can cause damage to the property.

What to Do When You Discover Mold

It is important that you act quickly when mold is discovered. 

  1. Alert People

Let people living or working in the building know that there has been mold discovered and move them to a different area. People can experience health effects to the spores let out by growing mold. 

  1. Ventilate The Area

Do your best to get air moving through the space. Open doors, windows, or use fans to start getting the moisture down and the air flowing. Once the cleanup starts, the mold spores can get disturbed. 

  1. Remove Water

Clean up the water or the leak that is causing the mold to grow. If you are not clear where it is coming from, call your maintenance team or your plumber to check it out.

Clean up all the water that may be pooling in the area. If it is a lot, get professionals to do it for you. The water needs to be removed and the source needs to be stopped.

  1. Discard Moldy Items

Remove carpet, books, cloth, boxes, anything that has come in contact with the mold. Anything that can’t be cleaned completely should be bagged up and discarded. Always wear protective gear, like a face mask, gloves, or anything you have available.

  1. Call The Professionals

You really need to call professionals in to clean up the mold and affected area. They know what to look for, how to identify different types of molds, have the proper cleaning supplies, and the proper clothing protection need.

  1. Education and Prevention

Once your building has been given the all-clear, people can return to those areas. It is important that people are aware of the causes and signs of mold or even potential mold.

Everyone should be made aware of the signs to look for and where mold is most likely to appear. Basements, laundry room, breakrooms, washrooms, and mop closets.

Look behind appliances, in corners, on the ceiling, and anywhere there may be damp spots, leaks, or water pooling.

Repair all leaking taps, pipes, or appliances that use water.

Have the HVAC system checked regularly, twice a year is recommended. Spring and fall work best.

Have regular cleaning maintenance on floors, walls, common areas, and basements.

Avoid Tobacco Fires by using these 3 Suggestions

2/10/2021 (Permalink)

Consider The Following Tips

If you or one of the residents in your home currently smokes, it's important to be informed on how to prevent a cigarette fire. After first checking with your local fire department in Lake Charles, LA, for any pointers they might have, consider other tips, as well.

1. Don't Smoke Indoors
There are a surprising number of flammable materials in your home. Any type of fabric will burn easily, so, if an ashtray gets knocked over, a stray cinder could easily start an ashtray fire and severely damage your home. In addition to the risk of fires, smoke from cigarettes can also damage the fabrics in your home and cause them to smell bad. This smell is difficult to remove with conventional laundry detergent.

2. Wear Removeable Clothing
If you or a family member smokes, make sure to wear clothing that can be removed easily after smoking and before entering the home. A jacket or a hoodie would be a good choice. This way, any odors are likely to soak into the removable item, rather than being tracked in and soaking into your furniture or drapes. It's also wise to wash this removable clothing often, as the odor will build up in these garments.

3. Consider Professional Odor Removal
If someone has smoked in your home for a while, or if there has been a cigarette fire, it's time to consider calling in odor removal and fire damage specialist. Hiring a professional will ensure that your home is cleaned from top to bottom with the best equipment suited for the job. This thorough home cleaning can include your carpet, drapes, air ducts, upholstery, and more. There is equipment meant for every job, whether you need full fire cleanup or an odor removal detail.
With a conscientious mind and some knowledge, it is possible to prevent a cigarette fire before it happens.

Knowing if Your Liability Insurance Covers Mold Remediation

2/10/2021 (Permalink)

Understanding What It Covers

As a business owner in Lake Charles, LA., you keep all of your insurance policies up-to-date. Even still, there are those unusual situations that give you pause: does my insurance actually cover that? You know that your general liability insurance covers slips and falls and property damage at a client's home, among other things, but what about mold exposure? Mold insurance claims can be tricky because mold is usually associated with water damage or a construction problem and therefore often falls under various exclusions in your coverage. It's unnerving if you don't know exactly what's covered versus what you might be responsible for. Here's what to look for in your general liability insurance policy to understand what it covers.

Exclusions

Common exclusions in your insurance policy include pollution exclusions and "business risk" exclusions. A mold claim doesn't have a guaranteed outcome because mold hasn't been consistently classified as a pollutant. There's a lot of variation between states when it comes to deciding whether mold falls under the pollution exclusion. Coverage is consistently denied to contractors if the claim is a result of defective workmanship unless the damage done by defective work has been incorporated into an existing building. How confusing!

Endorsements

Due to a lack of consistency surrounding mold insurance claims, many insurance companies have added endorsements to general liability policies that definitely exclude mold claims or at least limit coverage. One endorsement excludes mold remediation under all circumstances. However, since most mold is a direct result of water damage, which is covered, it's still not entirely clear how this endorsement impacts a mold claim.

Additional Policies

You can buy an additional policy that does cover mold; the challenge is that these policies are still fairly limited unless you're willing to pay a high premium.


The bottom line is that mold insurance claims are tricky because there is so little consistency surrounding coverage. Each time you renew, be on the lookout for changes to your policy to protect you and your business.

Water Damage After Heavy Rain

1/27/2021 (Permalink)

While water damage is typically associated with events like flooding or plumbing malfunctions, heavy rain can also cause its own set of issues regarding water damage around the house.

While any level of moisture can cause damage, heavy rain is considered rainfall at rates over 0.3 inches per hour and can work its way into much smaller vulnerabilities in your home. To help you better prepare and avoid water damage, we have put together a list of how these rapid rainfall rates can cause issues.

How Heavy Rains Cause Household Water Damage

Backup of clogged gutters

Clogged gutters can cause significant damage to your home after heavy rains. If there is debris in the gutters, it will be difficult for water to drain away, which can then result in leaks from puddles as the water is left standing against the roofline.

Leaks around windows and doors

Windows and doors are supposed to be sealed against the elements, but as their weatherproofing ages, it can deteriorate as well. When heavy rains roll through, water can find its way into minuscule cracks and cause damages.

Poor drainage around the foundation

If your home is at the bottom of a hill or does not have adequate drainage around the foundation, heavy rains can build up against the base of your home and lead to leaks in your basement or crawl spaces.

Leaks in and around the roof

Roof leaks are one of the leading consequences of heavy rains, and they can sneak up suddenly. All it takes is for a shingle to be scraped away or a weak spot to form and rainwater can begin seeping in as it falls.

Malfunctioning of a sump pump system

For homes with sump pumps, doing regular maintenance and checking for issues is key—otherwise, the pump system can get overwhelmed and will not be able to effectively move water away from the home.

Leaks around chimneys and skylights

Houses with chimneys and skylights tend to be more vulnerable to heavy rains than homes without them. While they are nice features to have, the seals where they meet with the roof can grow vulnerable over time and become overwhelmed when rainfall is heavy.

Remember to stay safe and get excess water cleaned up professionally to minimize the chance of mold growth. Our Team at SERVPRO of Lake Charles is ready to assist at a moment's notice with any of your water mitigation emergencies. Give our team a call at (337) 478-1133